NCVO Almanac points to fundamental shifts in the charity operating environment

Written by:

May 9, 2017 at 12:10

NCVO has just published summary data from its Almanac 2017 and as always, it is a fascinating read. The launch is tonight, so I’m looking forward to what the NCVO team have to say about the key findings. However initial reading does point to fundamental shifts in the operating and funding environment for charities. Some of these we have known for some time but the data appears to be confirming them. All of them have consequences for how charities plan ahead and the risks that we face.

Common Gift Aid Questions Answered by HMRC

Written by:

April 27, 2017 at 13:41

On the 31st March 2017, CFG hosted its regularly Gift Aid Conference  which was attended by charities, tax specialists and HMRC. HMRC’s Charity Outreach Team, led by Andrew Kayley, spoke about the Gift Aid Small Donations Scheme and Gift Aid and generously promised to respond to some questions raised in writing. Here are some of the queries and answers that were given by Andrew: Small Charitable Donations scheme (GASDS) & Refreshments  A payment for refreshments after a church service, at a fundraising event or a payment made to have a car washed are not eligible small donations. However, when a charge is […]

Better partnerships needed between finance and fundraising teams

Written by:

April 13, 2017 at 14:26

Fundraising isn’t just about fundraisers. It is about the whole organisation. One of the lessons that the sector has had to learn is that good fundraising requires the whole organisation to understand why it is raising funds and how it is going to raise them.

Cuts to BLF could have big financial consequences for charity sector

Written by:

November 23, 2015 at 15:55

You’ve probably read or seen the alarming reports over the weekend that the government may change the distribution of National Lottery Funds to divert money away from charities to the arts and sport in order to compensate for government cuts in funding.

Some lessons from HMRC’s Higher Rate Gift Aid Donors report

Written by:

July 17, 2015 at 09:30

HMRC has published some research that it had commissioned on understanding charitable giving and Gift Aid behaviour amongst better-off individuals. Although I am not convinced that this was the best use of HMRC’s budget (see below), there are some lessons that we can learn from this research – despite the small sample size. Here are a few things to take away from HMRC’s research: We need to improve public awareness of Gift Aid Despite the individuals being interviewed earning significant amounts and potentially claiming thousands of pounds worth of Gift Aid, it is concerning that many participants were confused about […]

How to avoid errors when claiming tax reliefs

Written by:

June 22, 2015 at 10:10

Nearly 70,000 charities claim tax reliefs worth billions every year. However common errors not only create problems for charities, but increase the costs for HMRC, creating delays and diverting funding that could go towards promoting the tax reliefs towards helping people to fill out their claim forms. Last year, HMRC provided a helpful ‘Top Tips’ sheet which charities can use to make the claiming process smoother. However, here is a quick overview of some of the top errors and some tips for avoiding them. Common errors when claiming 1. Duplicating the amounts of Gift Aid and Gift Aid Small Donations […]

Gift Aid could be the key to encouraging a culture of giving

Written by:

April 8, 2015 at 10:21

Charities Aid Foundation has released its latest UK Giving report for 2014 which provides an excellent insight into the state of giving and donations in the UK. One of the key lessons that I believe that we should take from the report, however, is that more needs to be done to encourage a culture of charitable giving in the UK – one of the key asks from the sector in the latest Managing in a New Normal report. This is particularly important for young people. A lot has been written in recent months about the need for the sector to do more to […]

Budget 2015 – Missed opportunities and targeted giveaways

Written by:

March 18, 2015 at 14:56

The Chancellor has sat down, the media are pouring over the budget documents looking for stories to come out of the figures, but what has been the impact of the Budget for charities? A slight easing of austerity Looking at the overall picture, it seems clear that the impact of austerity is not going be significantly reduced at the start of the next Parliament, but will be a lot lighter towards the end. Ignoring the effect of inflation, this Budget has seen an easing of the cuts. In 2016-17, the Budget implies that the amount available to spend for departments […]

#volsecbudget – What should charities look out for?

Written by:

March 17, 2015 at 10:51

Tomorrow will mark the last Budget of this Parliament, and already a great deal has been trailed in the media from inheritance tax cuts to raising the personal allowance. Charity Finance Group coordinated a letter with other sector bodies at the start of the month to ask the Chancellor to tackle a number of issues such as Gift Aid, Gift Aid Small Donations Scheme, VAT and capacity building for the sector. But what should charities be looking out for tomorrow when the Mr Osborne stands up at 12.30 after PMQs? Here are a few things that we think may interest […]

Looking back on 2014

Written by:

December 9, 2014 at 16:00

As we approach the end of 2014, it’s time for some reflection. The year has whizzed by shockingly quickly. It may have been a year of great change, but looking back to last December, I see that as a sector we are still asking for some of the same things, having the same debates, and opinions don’t appear to have moved on. Within the restrictions of this introduction, let me share a few thoughts. As an organisation we’ve experienced great change and huge shifts at CFG HQ, with new faces, a new approach and new activities. Whilst some of that […]